Crustless Primal Cheesecake

May 6, 2011


Just in time for Mother’s Day! I actually made this cheesecake for Easter, and it was a big hit. The texture was awesome, and it held together great without a crust. And there’s no flour in it either! (You’d be surprised how many cheesecake recipes call for flour…) The other thing I love about it is that there’s no sugar, and only 1/2 cup honey for the whole cake. It definitely doesn’t taste like honey though, which I think is a plus. Creamy, smooth, and not too sweet – this is my go to cheesecake recipe! Dress it up with a dollop of honey-sweetened whipped cream and some berry “sauce” – a perfect dessert worthy of any occasion.


  • 1 kg cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 tsp grated lemon rind
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2/3 cup sour cream


1. Preheat oven to 350°F.

Grease bottom of 9-inch springform pan and line the sides with parchment paper. Wrap the bottom of the spring form pan in a double layer of tin foil, going as high up the sides as possible.

2. Beat honey and lemon rind with cream cheese.

3.  Stir in eggs and yolk, individually.

4. Stir in sour cream.

5. Pour batter into springform pan.

6. Place springform pan into large pan and pour in hot water so it comes 1” up the side of the springform pan.

7. Bake for approximately 1 hour until surface appears less shiny and edges look set. Try not to open the oven while it’s baking so that the cake doesn’t fall prematurely. Also, be gentle with it when taking it out of the oven. It’ll still likely to fall quite a bit, and that’s okay.

8. Cool cheesecake, cover, and place in fridge for approximately 6 hours.

Sauce: For the berry “sauce”, heat berries on the stove until they’ve melted into a sauce. You can add some honey to make it more syrup-like, or some alcohol to enhance the flavor, but I find it tastes fine all on its own as well. I usually use frozen berries, which don’t tend to need any additional liquid, but if you’re using fresh berries, some water or juice may be helpful to reach the desired consistency.


Shared with Food Renegade and Real Food Wednesdays.

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{ 32 comments… read them below or add one }

manna May 6, 2011 at 4:37 PM

This looks amazing! To make a berry topping (sauce) do you just reduce them? Sorry, I’m new to cooking ;) Love your blog!


[email protected] May 7, 2011 at 6:26 AM

Hey, I’m glad you’re enjoying my blog, thanks for stopping by! :) Yeah, if you add in some alcohol or honey, you can sort of reduce it / cook it until it gets a little syrupy.. But if you’re just keeping it simple, just cook the berries until they get to the consistency you want.. I usually use frozen berries, so they get mushy pretty easily. If the sauce is too dry, you could also add in some juice, and slightly reduce that.


manna May 9, 2011 at 3:34 PM

Thank you so much! I can’t wait to try it! Yum!

Marta May 6, 2011 at 5:41 PM

Oh gosh, this looks delicious! I’m gonna try it for my coming birthday :D


[email protected] May 7, 2011 at 6:20 AM

Happy early birthday! :) Hope you enjoy the cheesecake as much as I did!


Anita June 11, 2011 at 5:45 AM

This looks great:) I just made a cheesecake with Ricotta cheese & sour cream, the rest of the ingredients very similar to yours.
The berries look scrumptious:)


[email protected] June 12, 2011 at 4:01 PM

Thanks! Mmm, I love ricotta.


Julie June 17, 2011 at 3:09 PM

Bless you for posting such a dessert recipe!!!


[email protected] June 17, 2011 at 8:46 PM

Sounds like you like cheesecake as much as I do! ;)


Sarah Smith June 24, 2011 at 5:34 AM

This looks fabulous! I’m excited to try it as a grain-free dessert for my birthday next month. Thank you!


[email protected] June 25, 2011 at 8:24 AM

You’re welcome, I hope you enjoy it! :)


Joanna July 29, 2011 at 11:52 AM

This looks delicious- I don’t even think I would miss the crust!


[email protected] July 30, 2011 at 8:07 AM

I certainly didn’t! :)


Cindy February 1, 2012 at 6:15 AM

Your recipe looks great, I will use parchment instead of tin foil to avoid the aluminum.


[email protected] February 1, 2012 at 3:02 PM

If u can get the parchment paper to stay in place so that water doesn’t seep into the pan, then I say go for it. I hope u enjoy the cheesecake! :)


Saira February 2, 2012 at 2:01 PM

This looks great! Silly question, but I’ve never baked a cheesecake before (primal or not), so I was wondering if you absolutely need to put the springform pan into another pan with water in it? My pans have some plastic parts on the handle so I wouldn’t want to put that into the oven…


[email protected] February 2, 2012 at 6:33 PM

The water bath creates a more even and gentle heat source for the cheesecake, as well as keeps the moisture level in the oven high. Without it, your cheesecake is liable to crack, which isn’t a huge deal. More importantly though, it increases the chances of the cheesecake not being evenly cooked through. Have you scoured your kitchen for any other pans that might be unconventional to cheesecake baking? Like maybe a large roasting pan that the springform would fit into?


Saira February 5, 2012 at 8:05 AM

Thanks! I’ll try that. I wasn’t sure if the different materials would make a difference in the heat distribution or something to the point where it would wreck the result.

Elizabeth February 2, 2012 at 5:41 PM

This looks amazing, and I just put mine in the oven. Wow! I’m stoked! The only sad part is I have to wait until tomorrow to try it, and since it’s for a dinner party, there probably won’t be leftovers.

Quick question, though… How many lemons makes 1 tsp. of rind? I went over the whole surface of my lone lemon, and still came up short.


[email protected] February 2, 2012 at 6:25 PM

One lemon should give you at least 1 tsp of zest, if not 2+. Was it a small lemon? :P Or perhaps the zester didn’t go deep enough and just got the very surface? I wouldn’t sweat it, I’d say the zest of one lemon is more than plenty. I hope everyone loves it!


Jasmine February 6, 2012 at 4:13 PM

looks good but 1/2 the fun of cheesecake is the crust.
i’ve been seening these interesting “raw nut” crusts. i think im gonna try your recipe with one of these.

thanks for sharing.


[email protected] February 6, 2012 at 10:26 PM

If I were to try a nut crust, I’d go for macadamia, that would probably taste pretty amazing!


Steph April 2, 2012 at 7:57 AM

Just made this last night, topped with whipped cream and homemade honeyed almonds. SO GOOD. These are the types of things that have made the transition into primal eating so much easier for my husband. This and meatza :)


[email protected] April 2, 2012 at 9:35 AM

So glad you and your husband enjoyed it :) great idea with the almonds!


Sarah June 11, 2012 at 10:15 PM

I did 3 parts regular cream cheese and 1 part strawberry cream cheese. Instead of the lemon rind, I grated in a frozen strawberry! Turned out fantastic! I love how the ingredients can be tweaked and will still produce a phenomenal cake!


[email protected] June 11, 2012 at 10:21 PM

Love the grated strawberry idea! So happy your strawberry-flavored variation panned out! :)


B November 16, 2012 at 4:30 PM

I’m confused. Everything I’ve read says dairy is not allowed on the Paleo diet. I can’t eat it anyway because I’m allergic to it, but I was all excited to try a Paleo Cheesecake recipe and I don’t see how this qualifies as Paleo. Can you explain?



[email protected] November 16, 2012 at 6:04 PM

It’s a “primal” cheesecake, not a paleo cheesecake. Dairy is allowed on a “primal” diet. If you’re looking for a paleo one, I’ve seen recipes with creamed cashews. Although some people (like me) are on the fence about whether cashews are paleo (legumes).


YL January 13, 2013 at 1:37 AM

I think I’ll try this recipe to bring over to my Aunt’s next week. I’d like to do it with a crust though. Any recipe suggestions for a nut-based crust? Would I have to prebake the crust then bake the filling?


[email protected] January 13, 2013 at 10:57 AM

Any nut-based crust should work – I don’t typically use crusts, so I don’t have one that I can recommend. But I just did a quick google, and there are lots of options out there, depending on which nut you’d like to use. I think a macadamia nut crust would go especially nice with a cheesecake, but other nuts should be lovely as well. Typically, you bake the crust first, and then add the filling and bake it again. Let me know how it turns out!


Julie April 5, 2013 at 8:43 AM
[email protected] April 5, 2013 at 6:30 PM

That’s great, thanks!


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